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Without giving away too much, Benedict Cumberbatch just kills it. He is
one class actor. Cumberbatch rocks as Strange and pulls it off with
ease. The impressions his portrayal gives us is that he was born to
play the role of the ex-neurosurgeon turned Sorcerer Supreme. Such is
the talent of the lead cast, that it represents just how good the movie
was overall. Every normal movie watcher will love the action, humour,
adventure and fantasy throughout the film.
A solid new character introduced to the Marvel Cinematic Universe with loads of potential. Cumberbatch solidifies and anchors his role in the MCU as Stephen Strange in a similar fashion to RDJ doing so with Tony Stark.
A must watch! Enjoy!
I was lucky enough to be among the press-junket last Wednesday to
witness this movie! I usually rate movies by different aspects, but
i'll also answer some questions my friends had about this film which I
also had myself!
Acting (10/10): This cast is amazing! They embody their characters instead of trying to act like the character. Benedict as Dr. Strange was a portrayal right out of the comics! Tilda as the ancient one killed it!
Action (10/10): Wow! I could argue the action in this movie being on par with the scenes in civil war. It was so incredible watching this scenes with million pieces moving yet focus sing on the main characters. Wide angles, long shots and great choreography. what else do you want?
Story(8/10) : This movie had a solid story and you believed what, how and why things were going on! Villain was good and actually a memorable one for once(stab, you're welcome dc fans). It was not flawless though. The pace kind of slows down before the final act which was unnecessary!
Cinematography/VFX 10/10: The images in this film blew my mind! There is a scene in the beginning where the ancient one shows Dr strange "the magic" and it is great! Some serious mind-bending stuff combined with great visuals to let it manifest itself to the audience. Most artistic movie yet of marvel.
Overall, i'd give this movie an 8.5. Though this isn't THE best marvel movie, it is truly one of best out there. After the disappointing Jason borne, jack reach er etc. we finally have a movie that lives up to the hype! GO Watch this movie in Max 3d if possible, because it is worth it for once!
Some questions that my friends asked:
"Is this better than civil war?" - Well visual-wise on par, but story-wise civil war is better for many reasons including the fact that civil war had a lot of background information to work with. This was more of a standardized origin film.
"Is there a post-credit scene?" - Ah yes sir! Apparently there are two, but we got to see only 1.
"Is this the most mind-boggling thing you've ever seen on screen?" - Ehm yes and no. Yes, because the effects were amazing and things I've never seen before. No, nothing was so mind-blowing that it made me think different of the world or something.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Wow! DOCTOR STRANGE is an incredible mindtrip. Its VFX alone makes
Christopher Nolan's 'Inception' look like some kind of beta test. And
this film is so much fun, it's hilarious, it's got some of the most
complex, most elaborate action sequences I've seen all year, and I
can't stop geekin' out about the cloak of levitation. This is Benedict
Cumberbatch making his grand entrance into the Marvel Cinematic
Directed by Scott Derrickson who helped provide the script, DOCTOR STRANGE is about a successful, talented, arrogant neurosurgeon, Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch). Suddenly, a tragic car accident leaves Strange's hands permanently damaged, which means he can no longer perform surgery. After trying western medicine, he hears of a man who was badly injured and then got miraculously healed, this leads Strange to the secrets of a hidden world of alternate dimensions. Under the teaching and guidance of the Ancient One (Tilda Swinton) Strange unleashes metaphysical abilities and ultimately takes on the responsibility of protecting earth from mystical threats.
Created by Marvel's legendary artist, Steve Ditko, the character Doctor Strange is a very unique one because he's not a product of some kind of technological armor, he's not a nordic god nor a space alien, and he doesn't get his powers from super serum nor gamma rays, and so kudos to Marvel Studios for taking a chance on this one of a kind character because it makes for an unbelievably fantastic origin story on screen that's just different from the rest of the bunch that Marvel has introduced to us so far. And there's just something refreshing about that.
What a great cast, they could not have picked a better lead star, Benedict Cumberbatch knocks it out of the park. Whenever Strange gets a bit cocky, you can see a little bit of Cumberbatch's Sherlock attitude kicking in there. But Strange is more quick to sensibility whereas Sherlock would still have to put them all through his reasoning filters. And Cumberbatch's sense of humor is absolutely sharp. There's a ton of funny moments in this film but they never take away from the problem at hand or what Strange has to tackle at that very moment.
I'm Asian but I'm not bothered by Tilda Swinton playing the Ancient One, I understand this is supposedly the film's biggest controversy but the fact of the matter is that once you've seen DOCTOR STRANGE, you'll understand why Tilda is perfect in this role. The woman is an impeccable actress and she exudes the specific wisdom needed for this because in many ways, when you deal with a monastery-like setting where people learn martial art and philosophies about self- control, the expectation is that the master would preach parables, analogies, or metaphors in bestowing that wisdom and Tilda does it with ease like David Carradine's Kwai Chang Caine from the old "Kung Fu" series.
Mads Mikkelsen's Kaecilius, I gotta say, is not my favorite villain in MCU, I think Mikkelsen does a fine job but the character just doesn't land for me. But I gotta give Scott Derrickson and his co-writers much credit for introducing as many elements as they could from Doctor Strange comic books including Dormammu, and so those who watch the film and may be confused by the jargons, like the Eye of Agamotto, can go to the comic books and discover why it is important to include those in a Doctor Strange movie along with the manipulation of space, energy and time which is also another big deal. And that leads me to what I think is the film's most amazing appeal,.. seeing buildings bend over on itself, characters teleporting, and the insane things that the cloak of levitation can do because it carries its own consciousness. It really doesn't get more of a movie magic than DOCTOR STRANGE.
-- Rama's Screen --
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I had fun seeing this movie. It's an overall good popcorn flick. But if
you are, as i'am, a little demanding about movies, you'll feel in the
end that they gave a great amount of attention to the digital/special
effects aspect of the movie and very little to the screenplay. In the
end, if you're one of those weirdos who stay and watch the credits out
of respect for the crew who made the movie possible, you'll notice that
digital, cgi and special effects have huge teams of dozens of computer
geeks who master an art that fills 90% of today's action movies. That's
saying a whole lot of the movies industry these days.
The movie has a relaxed tone to it, almost like Green Lantern. The protagonist is egocentric and stubborn. His confidence is often mistaken for arrogance. The jokes are of bad taste. The dialogues are light and deprived of any seriousness. Even in the event of an eminent apocalypse, Dr. Strange manages to throw his puns and bad jokes. The multiverse of presented almost as a gratuitous event, a mundane truth accessible to anyone of travels to Kathmandu. There's no secret, no effort to achieve it. You only need to knock at their door, and the Ancient One will teach you right away the secrets of the astral plane. There's no sense of urgency, like for instance the urgency that drives Neo to find the truth about the Matrix and his decision to swallow the red pill.
This plot is old and recycled. It takes the Hero's Journey myth and put it to practice. And we've seen it a thousand before: Talented yet self centered person is set to trial and loses his talent/strength. Seeking redemption, finds a tutor. The tutor teaches humility and new found power. An enemy emerges. Tutor dies in fight. Apprentice seeks revenge, wins battle, takes the tutor's position. More or less, this formula is old and we all know it.This movie is academic in this sense. But it somehow works. It's light mood dialogues and absence of seriousness makes it digestible.
Well... at least until the last battle. Dormammu (one of my favorite marvel villains) is so poorly portrayed. Worst only Galactus in Fantastic Four Rise of the Silver Surfer. And the battle, the solution found by Dr.Strange to defeat Dormammu makes absolutely no sense. The Eye of Agamoto controls time in a dimension where time exists, but the the Dark Dimension of Dormammu there's no such thing as Time. So, how could the Eye even work in a dimension where the concept of time does not exist. How did even Dormammu succumbed to a concept to which he was not captive of of? Did the Eye of Agamoto invented time in the Dark Dimension? Of course not. It's just a bad plot decision. It's simply lazy writing.
The way they confuse so many time the realm of metaphysics with hard science like quantum mechanics, is astonishing. Like they were trying to mask the comic book nature of Dr. Strange (a sorcerer who is able to travel between dimensions with his magical powers) with quantum physics Wikipedia vocabulary. The confusing and unnecessary discussion between Strange and the Ancient One about the nature of the Multiverse, shows an attempt to minimize the "magic" of movie and make it sound more ... "scientific". Dr. Strange, in the book, is a magical entity. His powers are far beyond known science as he can do things modern science finds impossible. So the attempt to rationalize such character is in my opinion a big mistake.
Overall, is an entertaining movie, with cool special effects, pleasant acting and light atmosphere. Good Saturday evening flick. Don't expect lots of brains in it.
Way back when I first heard that Doctor Strange was being brought to
the screen I was a bit worried. How could they translate the complexity
of character and his true coolness but stay away from the cheeseball
stuff? Dress a guy up like the books and remain true to the seriousness
of the character? Well, they managed to not only pull it off but
deliver one of the best hero origin films ever made.
The director knew that you had to establish and truly care about the character. Making it grounded but still trippy really helps give it a flavor unlike any other comic adaptation. The Harry Potter meets Iron Man meets Ant-Man flavor was there yet it all feels unique. The MCU magic is there literally. Everything established in the Captain America films and both Avengers pays dividends in a way here. The universe has been established wonderfully and this film does the best job to date playing in that universe. Everything and every scene packs some sort of punch and resonates with true style and heart. They really let the action flow but also allow for key development of the overall story and over concept. This also allows them to probe deeper into the character's personalities. ALL the characters even the ones with smaller roles get to shine. This heightens the tension, so often missing from lesser comic-book movies, and adds real weight to the action sequences which are thrilling and often mesmerizing. Add more than a dash of thriller aspects and a few new characters that steal every scene that they appear in.
I honestly can't think of one way to improve this film. The result is a movie that's just flat out exceptional and that honestly delivers the best visuals I've ever seen in a movie.
In a year with 5 other comic book movies being released, i guess you
could say that making Doctor Strange seem different from the others
would be quite a feat for Marvel Studios to pull off. But, surprise
surprise... they do. Benedict Cumberbatch stars as the stubborn,
egotistical neurosurgeon whose personal tragedy leads him to join a
legion of sorcerers and learn the complexities of the mystic arts.
Although fans of the Sherlock series will say otherwise, this is the
character that the guy was born to portray. He perfectly plays a man
who develops from being overly cocky to being smart with his skills and
knowledge. In terms of acting, positive things can be said about Tilda
Swinton and Chiwetel Ejiofor, they ooze their individual personas like
they aren't even playing a role. Rachel McAdams and Benedict Wong are
also great but like plenty of Marvel's smaller characters, they just
don't get that much screen time.
The problem with screen time also affects Mads Mikkelson's villain character as well. He isn't underdeveloped though, he just isn't in many scenes. The screen time problem with characters is something that could be forgiven though. The movie has a run time of 130 minutes and uses it very well. There is no filler whatsoever. Every scenes has a point. Whether its developing a character, advancing the plot or just making you laugh, director Scott Derickson has filled scenes with enough of every variable to get any viewer hooked. The movie even has some emotional moments too. A scene with Swinton and Cumberbatch having a quiet conversation while lightning crackles in a sky of drifting snow is one of the best shot scenes of this year... i'm not joking.
Two of Marvel's hallmarks, action and humour get a new lease of life in this movie. The insane, trippy dimension scenes are a love letter to Steve Ditko's iconic comic panels. Buildings twist out of shape, panes of glass ripple and entire street blocks fold in on themselves, creating a crazy CGI playground for characters to square of in. ILM and Marvel wonderfully visualise everything that make this character's lore unique. Relics, spells and locations all look amazing. If I was to gripe about visuals, i would mention the green screen. It is a bit hazy in some areas.
All in all, Marvel has done well with Doctor Strange. Origin stories can be clichéd and boring, but the trick is to do something different. Marvel have a formula that they use in not only their origin stories but all of their solo movies. However, it isn't specific and despite what people might say, that loose formula allows for some creativity. Guardians of the Galaxy and the Captain America sequels are proof of that. Roll on more Doctor Strange!
P.S: There are two credits scenes. Both teasing future movies, one of them being a not yet confirmed Doctor Strange sequel.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Another MCU movie that the bandwagon is giving stellar reviews to even
though it sucks.
The movie follows the same basic formula as all of the other MCU movies. There's quips, there's jokes, there's a McGuffin, there's a 1-dimensional villain.
Movie's sole purpose is another lead-up to the next Avengers. The mystical artifact Strange uses turns out to be an Infinity Stone. "Shocking". If I had a dollar for every time Marvel did something that took me by surprise, I'd be flat broke, because you can see this stuff coming from a mile away.
I swear, I almost walked out when I heard the wifi password joke. Not to mention the stupid cape being alive so they have more comedy in the movie. Comedy? My mistake, I meant cringe.
Marvel Movies have a tendency to love to have the hero getting betrayed by someone they thought an ally. Baron Mordo is a friend of Strange and his group in the movie. He's a villain in the comics. Anyone knows what is coming from a mile away. He doesn't go full bad guy in this one, but expect him to be full on evil in the sequel.
Another thing nearly every single MCU movie does is the fake-out death. A character will die and then in the next movie or even just in the post-credit scene of the movie they died in they'll pop up alive and well. Seriously, go back and look. Wong dies in this movie and Strange just reverses time and brings him back. The only character I think has stayed dead is Quicksilver. And there were rumors he was going to pop up alive and well somehow in the New Avengers scene at the end of Age of Ultron.
The warped city stuff isn't as revolutionary is people claim. Considering Inception did it 6 years ago and that horrible Devil May Cry reboot did something similar as well.
Movie is getting stellar reviews, which doesn't mean much. At this point Marvel Studios could just release a 2 hour movie that is just the main character sipping a glass of tea while sniffing a dog turd and it would still get critical acclaim.
You know why it's so freaking hard to enjoy Marvel movies these days? When everyone is on the bandwagon and everyone attacks you if you have a different opinion, and when the movies are praised for being "amazing" when in reality they're just actually "just okay" or only "halfway decent", it makes them movies feel worse to me because when they don't live up to what critics and the fanboys say it is.
Like Civil War this year. Everyone called it a "Masterpiece." Then I saw it and the whole movie only functioned because of the gaping plot holes. But if you point out said plot holes you get vilified.
I think this movie might be the last MCU movie I bother seeing. They all feel the same, follow the same formula, and the fanboys make going to see them insufferable. Maybe Spider-man: Homecoming could be good, but since they have Vulture, Shocker, and Tinkerer (3 1- dimensional villains) as the villains of the film, it looks like the movie is already setting up to be the same movie with different characters we've seen about 15 times now. Just watch, I bet that the plot ends up being Vulture trying to steal a priceless artifact and Spidey has to keep it from him, and then in the post-credit scene it's revealed to be an Infinity Stone so they can do another "Look, look, shared universe,everything tied together" moment that are tired at this point.
Why did I give it a 1? I'd have given it a five, but the over-hyped nonsense from critics and the Marvel fanboys just makes these movies feel worse than they actually are to me. A mediocre movie ends up feeling like complete trash when everyone is calling it one of the best movies ever and then you see it and it's just "kind of sort of okay" Especially when the only thing I thought was good in the movie was the special effects. I also enjoyed the special effects in the Transformers series, but as we all know, those movies suck, and no amount of great special effects will save a crap movie.
Movie also shows the problems the MCU will be facing soon. Dr. Strange is a D-list character at best. After they lose Iron Man, Cap, Hulk, Widow, Thor, Nick Fury, and the other characters that the MCU was built on, they'll only have Spider-man and a bunch of C and D-listers holding their shared universe together.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
After seeing this movie, and then seeing the other reviews for it
online, I felt the need to write my opinion in order to share why some
did not like it and why I feel it could have been far better under
First of all, I generally like Marvel's films. They manage to put out new stories virtually every year and incorporate new characters into their ensemble. They've also mastered the art of masking each film as original and fresh, and for the most part it's just a fun time at the cinema. But the problem is that eventually, while you will always be able to pick new heroes from the massive wealth Marvel has created through comics, the formula, the acting, the uninspired scripts and classic gimmicks will become stagnant and even begin to bore the audience.
I wanted to like Doctor Strange, and I, too, was convinced by the trailers that it would be captivating and interesting and thought- provoking. But twenty minutes into the movie and I could already tell how this was probably going to go.
The acting was to be expected given the cast they chose, but nothing stood out. Benedict Cumberbatch played a convincing Doctor Strange, but his character was completely static - I felt no indication that he had changed in the slightest by the end of the film (which is what the filmmakers were lazily trying to portray), and I couldn't even figure out why he suddenly wanted to fight the enemy in the first place. The rest of the characters were poorly fleshed out, and I found myself caring little for any of them, a phenomenon that did not occur when I watched "Iron Man" or "Guardians of the Galaxy". The jokes and wise-cracks felt especially childish this time around, and even out of place in the face of sincerely substantial ideas such as alternate dimensions and the fabric of time and space. Additionally, the pace simply felt rushed and awkward, and like I said before, I just couldn't find myself caring for any of the one- dimensional, superficial characters.
The plot was formulaic, which is typical and expected of Marvel; hero suddenly has powers, hero is confronted by conflict larger than himself, hero acts selflessly to save the day and the girl, hero returns and the film ends with some good old fashioned comic relief (Wang laughing, in this case). Normally I could enjoy this, but combined with the tepid acting, shallow characters and strange pacing, the whole plot and film just felt... tired. Even with the great visuals (which were truly impressive and to the benefit of the movie), I simply didn't enjoy it. I wanted more, a more interesting script that had at least a couple memorable or provocative lines rather than none, a stronger character arc, a better and more menacing villain (spoilers aside, the final confrontation was COMPLETELY underwhelming and mildly ridiculous), and, all-in-all, a more enticing movie.
I really think "Doctor Strange" could have been a lot better of a film, but I feel like the filmmakers were just flat-out lazy this time around. While I do recognize the cash-cow that is Marvel, I just hope this isn't the beginning of the end for their good movies, movies with at least a little bit of substance. They still plan to cram over a dozen heroes into Infinity War, and if as little heart and care is put into it as was put into this one, it could be a very bad, shallow, exhausted film.
3.5/10 for great visuals and a relatively coherent plot.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
What a dung heap.
Usually I love Mr. Cumberbatch, and even think his Bostonian accent in Black Mass was passable. Lord, this movie, though...
Bad American accent, bad lines, dodgy acting by the entire cast (McAdams was the only thing I liked about True Detective II), lame villains, kindergarten costumes, unoriginal special effects (which may've been the one redeemable aspect), poor plot exposition, and at no time did it encourage me to suspend disbelief.
At times, when fighting out-of-body in a hospital, they inexplicably bump into something things while passing right through others. Sitting with a friend, we both finished several predictable lines of dialogue prior to the character parroting it out.
The only good thing about this movie is that it ends.
This is my review of Doctor Strange (spoiler free)
SINCE 2014s GUARDIANS of the Galaxy stomped all over the box-office with it's over $800 million boot and Ant-Man repeating the same process a year later, the Marvel Cinematic Universe have developed quite a knack for bringing to life virtually unknown origin stories in quite a spectacular fashion and that brilliant record shows that Doctor Strange will be no exception. However it may be the weirdest and strangest addition but by no means it is nonetheless an enjoyable addition as this cognitive story offers manipulative sorcery, clever screenplay, mind-melting action and mind-bending CGI it's fair to say that this will not be forgotten anytime soon. Get the thought out of your head that you never could see Benedict Cumberbatch in a cape, as he pulls it off so well along with that and the glorious devil look-a-like goatee that it looks like he was born to play this role and his brilliant performance shows it. The whole concept here is that this was strange from day one and the story written and directed by long time fan and look-a-like Scott Derrickson using his own vision this origin story is brilliant, and to put it lightly mind-blowing and is certainly a vast improvement over his last feature Deliver Us From Evil his vision and his screenplay are very clever and cognitive as the screenplay alone will manipulate the mind. In terms of the CGI picture the sorcery of Harry Potter meets the clever screenplay and the reality defying, world building dream worlds of Inception and imagine if those two joined forces and had a baby, well Doctor Strange is that baby weird concept but that's this in a bag.
It may surprise you to know that the insanity that is this movie starts out ordinary with Dr. Steven Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) working his normal shift as a show off neurosurgeon in a hospital along with his colleague/life partner Dr. Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams), until he is the victim of a terrible car crash (might this be a lesson to never text and drive) and shatters almost every nerve in his hand and has to undergo several procedures in order to get better. Until he finds an elegant solution which is nicely done in this addition he has to go to the stunning Nepal near the Himalaya mountain range and has to learn the path to power and the kind of responsibilities it holds. However at some points he almost gives up on life and sees no more strength to learn but continues on.
Naturally some origin stories of this style are terribly rushed and get to the action rather quickly and although at some points this does take a while to settle but with the clever screenplay and brilliant time bending and world building powers it's set out rather well, granted there are a couple of times when some of the scenes are just stuck together and some take a while to get with the story but who cares when the final result and the final battle are so eye achingly impressive, filled with a kaleidoscope of building splits, moving floors and also a levitating cape it's almost as if he stepped into a dream world but as the story goes on he realizes that its all too real.
It's quite the spectacle.
The first act is used to just settling into the story and introducing the many characters played by big international players, and also training with magic which is done in a very intriguing way as the Ancient One (Tilda Swinton) shows him the powers of the mind and he looks very impressed as he has gone from a none believer to becoming a learner this scene is both inventive and has a colourful kaleidoscope which looks amazing in 3D. The second and third acts are when the world literally turns upside down for Doctor Strange as he has to face Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelsen) and a great and powerful entity that he serves but he learns that his power is stronger than he thinks. Interestingly Kaecilius gives Doctor Strange some advice and also a shock which we won't spoil. During the second act there is a beautiful training lesson with Mordo (Chiwetel Ejiofor) this is brilliantly done with some very inventive CGI that shows the way he moves looking like he is flying. At one point there is a battle that has never been seen before in any film of this style and that is an astral projection battle between Strange and Lucian (Scott Adkins), which is just a gob smacking few minutes during the battle, and while they are at it they scare Christine this adds a bit of comedy to the scene. The clever screenplay also adds some hilarious moments where they are needed proving that the director can make a serious film with insane CGI and even add some comedy to the final production.
Doctor Strange may be one of the strangest and possibly the most insane addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe but is still nonetheless entertaining and this proves that Marvel are keeping a better record with kick-ass origin stories, that are a spectacular CGI f**kathon and if the end result is this entertaining then that is a record that shall continue for decades, much better than the record currently obtained by the DCEU who at the moment need a miracle to overcome the disastrous films they've made lately. Easily one of the best films this year and shall be remembered for ages and who knows may even repeat the box-office record set by Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant-Man. This is a strange world.
VERDICT: The Marvel Cinematic Universe shines again with manipulative sorcery and cognitive storytelling as this may be the strangest addition but still delivers some kick-ass entertainment.
8/10 powerfully manipulative.
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